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Tempering Chocolate

Chocolate

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#271 curls

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Posted 14 May 2013 - 05:10 AM

Jim D. thanks for running additional tests and reporting back. Sounds like you are making a lot of progress and becoming very comfortable with tempering.

#272 Jim D.

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Posted 22 July 2013 - 04:42 PM

I have had a lot of mysterious experiences in chocolate-making, but I think I have now encountered one of the oddest.  It has been hot and humid where I live, but when I prepared to make a few chocolates for a gift, I turned the AC to a cooler-than-usual temperature and began the process.  The pieces looked great, but when I unmolded them, about half of the 15 pieces came out without a serious problem, whereas the others stuck and came out damaged in various ways.  A few had cracks in the shells, but most of the unsuccessful ones had that familiar grayish look of chocolate that is no longer in temper--they were too ugly to take as a gift.  I put the rejects aside as a consolation for the unsuccessful chocolatier, and--regardless of appearance--they were delicious.  Today, three days later, I went to eat the remaining ones, and--lo and behold--they now look perfect!  All that gray is gone.  I wouldn't say they are actually perfect because I just left them out on the counter and so they are a little soft and no longer have the snap of tempered chocolate, but they do in fact look quite presentable, even have a shine.  I would certainly feel confident to take them as a gift.  Maybe I have hit upon an easy solution for unsuccessful chocolates--just let them sit around for a while!  I like to try to understand what happens when things go wrong in making chocolates, but haven't a clue as to the explanation this time.  Any ideas?

 

I have to mention one triumph when the chocolates I took were passed around:  One guest, obviously not all that familiar with tempered chocolates, innocently asked how they came to have such a glossy appearance.  I couldn't have fed her a better line if I had thought about it for days!  Of course I didn't mention the ones that were sitting at home.



#273 Kerry Beal

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Posted 22 July 2013 - 07:05 PM

What was the filling?  I've had nut based filling seep through the shell and 'improve' it before.



#274 Jim D.

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Posted 22 July 2013 - 07:09 PM

Kerry,

It was a simple mint filling molded in dark chocolate.



#275 keychris

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Posted 23 July 2013 - 01:30 PM

did you use a mint oil? or some type of fat that could migrate to the surface of your chocolate?



#276 parameda

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Posted 17 November 2013 - 03:36 AM

Hi,

 

I'm a novice in chocolate making and I'm having difficulties with tempering. I've read everything there was to read and have tried various methods but nothing worked. Now I begin to think that my couverture is the culprit. I work with Belcolade noir, it looks well tempered and demould perfectly but after several hours it starts to develop yellowish streaks. My working area is properly heated (20-22C) and there's no draught. My couverture, however, loooks off. Could it be the reason for lack of shine and streaks on my chocolate?

This is what my couverture looks like:

Untitled_zps0e1b5974.jpg



#277 Kerry Beal

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Posted 17 November 2013 - 07:11 AM

Can you take us through your tempering technique?



#278 parameda

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Posted 17 November 2013 - 08:22 AM

Sure. Double boiler till 45C, then seed and stir, stir, stir untill it reaches 30-31C and heat it again to 32C. These are Belcolade recommended temps for the type I work with. I've also tried with ice water and microwave and the end results are always the same. Looks tempered (I always test it), demould like a charm, but those streaks are driving me crazy.



#279 Kerry Beal

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Posted 17 November 2013 - 08:45 AM

That's dark right?  You can seed down to about 33 or 34 - don't need to heat back up.  Make sure there is a tiny bit still unmelted when it gets down to the working temperature.



#280 keychris

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Posted 17 November 2013 - 12:36 PM

streaks can indicate you need more beta crystals in your chocolate at the start - so that means more stirring when you're at working temperature!



#281 minas6907

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Posted 17 November 2013 - 01:32 PM

I have a question for those with tempering machines, the kind that keep a huge amount of chocolate in contant roatation. How long can you keep chocolate like that in temper? I remember reading something like one week, is that true? After that do you just drain the system and reuse the chocolate? How about cleaning the machine, how is that done? It seems like if it was to be cleaned it would be very meticulous, but do you use any water? Let dry completely in every way before adding chocolate again? I was also wondering about ganaches. Is it ever an issue with an enrober that small pieces might break away and combine with the chocolate? Also, what about starch molded cordials? I've dipped the cordials by hand before, and had the bottoms of some of them break, if that happened inside an enrober, it seems like that's it for the chocolate. I'm sorry for all the questions, but when I see these systems I've always wondered about the small details.

#282 Kerry Beal

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Posted 17 November 2013 - 05:29 PM

I can't really comment on length of time - I tend to do things in my Selmi at a single sitting and if I leave the chocolate in it I just retemper the next day.

 

To clean the older Selmis you can't use water - so essentially you run fresh chocolate through it.  So if the chocolate is contaminated by nuts etc - you will never fully remove that.  The newer Selmis have a removable screw so they can be pulled apart and cleaned with water.

 

That said - I have seen the guys at Tomric setting up a garden hose and running water through the old Selmi - drying them would be the huge issue.



#283 Alleguede

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Posted 17 November 2013 - 07:06 PM

You can follow kerry's suggestion. I would recommend you keep some of your melted 45degree chocolate on the side. Seed with about 25to30%. Bring it down to 32ish. Then test. Put that test once set in the fridge for 2 min and see how it results. If you have the streaks, add a little of the melted chocolate. Not higher then 33degrees.

Does your chocolate appear thick? or very fluid? How old is it?



#284 parameda

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Posted 18 November 2013 - 04:57 AM

ok, I tried it on higher working temp, as Kerry suggested and the choc wasn't tempered. I was just thinking, could it be residual cacao butter on my moulds? I don't wash them, just rinse with warm water and polish with cotton cloth. Those streaks are not white but yellowish. I appreciate your help and please have patient since I've just registered and restricted to two posts per day



#285 Kerry Beal

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Posted 18 November 2013 - 01:44 PM

Are you confident in your thermometer?



#286 parameda

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Posted 18 November 2013 - 03:24 PM

yes, I have IR thermometer I recently bought



#287 Kerry Beal

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Posted 18 November 2013 - 07:17 PM

I have a number of IR thermometers - not all are accurate.  Do you have a way of testing them?



#288 parameda

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Posted 19 November 2013 - 02:32 AM

it's a brand new and it has been calibrated in accordance to HACCP



#289 parameda

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 02:30 AM

For past two days I tried every single thing you guys mentioned and it worked. Apparently, my "calibrated" thermometer wasn't as accurate as I thought and my moulds also needed proper cleaning and polishing. Just wanted to thank you all for the help.



#290 minas6907

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 09:44 AM

How do you go about calibrating an ir thermometer? Whats a good test to do?

#291 parameda

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 10:31 AM

Nothing in particular, just tested my chocolate and that was it. If it helps, I know there's a test with ice and water on the net or you could contact companies which are specialized in calibrating thermometers.



#292 Meenap101

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 12:14 PM

So I tried making some chocolate bars, sprinkled cocoa nibs and ground coffee on the surface, however the chocolate must not have been in proper temper and therefore I got fat bloom on the bars. So my question is can I try to re-temper the bars and remodel them or even make chocolate bark out of them, how will the cocoa nibs and ground coffee in the chocolate effect the tempering of the chocolate?
Thanks for any advice in advance.

#293 keychris

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 07:53 PM

for my food safe registration, I have to calibrate my thermometers, they say to do it with boiling water and ice water.



#294 Kerry Beal

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Posted 21 November 2013 - 08:01 PM

You will probably get away with it since they aren't really fat containing ingredients (at least not a different fat than cocoa butter).



#295 YetiChocolates

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Posted 04 December 2013 - 08:35 AM

For all those out there who use melters, I remember Kerry mentioning that she sometimes uses untempered chocolate to reduce the viscosity of the tempered chocolate when you've been using it for awhile due to the buildup of the beta crystals.  What temperature would be ideal to have the chocolate at (I'm assuming close to 90 F/30 C) to add to the tempered chocolate to make sure it doesn't go out of temper?  



#296 Canerrity

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Posted 19 December 2013 - 05:12 PM

I recently completed a one week course/49 hrs on making chocolates. Upon returning home and trying to make chocolates on my own I have failed every time. I cannot temper it using the table method. I was able to do this the first time in the course and about 20 times afterwards, but I cannot get it to work in my house.

 

I am following the same procedure, using the same chocolate, and working on a granite slap I bought, but after 8 attempts, nothing. I am using Cocoa Berry dark. I heat the chocolate to 40-50 C/104-122F in the microwave and let it sit for min of 10 minutes. Then I table it until it is at least 27C/81F, return the seed to the bowl and maintain at 32-3C/ 90F to work with. However, when I do a parchment test, it never sets. It looks good on the surface but does not dry for many minutes.

 

All I can think of is environment. I live in Canada. It is -23C/-10F outside. Inside, the house is 21-22C/70-72F and humidity 25%. I am feeling very frustrated and disappointed. I invested a lot in learning the basic skills of chocolate making. I did not have any particular problems in the course but I cannot even get started on my own. Any suggestion would be appreciated.



#297 Jim D.

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Posted 19 December 2013 - 07:08 PM

I can't help with the tabling method, but have you tried seeding?  It's generally considered much easier.  I know what it's like to want to conquer a major hurdle, but sometimes practicality is the way to go.



#298 Jim D.

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Posted 19 December 2013 - 07:16 PM

I've posted many times on failures in tempering, but this time I have a bizarre success to report.  I had a little leftover mint ganache and decided to make a few pieces; my main desire was to try some new decorating techniques.  I swirled cocoa butter into the cavities, then tempered (or perhaps not) some milk chocolate.  The test for tempering was inconclusive, but by the time I had placed the mold in the refrigerator for a while, I knew that the chocolate was not tempered (after half an hour, the chocolate in the mold was still soft).  The leftover chocolate on parchment was a mess, did not harden for a long time.  But I persevered and filled the cavities with the mint ganache.  For closing, I made sure the chocolate was tempered.  I knew the effort would be a failure, but out of curiosity I wanted to see what would happen.  After 30 minutes in the refrig, I turned the mold upside down--and out popped perfect chocolates, shiny, nothing left in the mold.

 

In some ways this is more annoying than a successful effort as it makes absolutely no sense.



#299 Kerry Beal

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Posted 19 December 2013 - 08:11 PM

I recently completed a one week course/49 hrs on making chocolates. Upon returning home and trying to make chocolates on my own I have failed every time. I cannot temper it using the table method. I was able to do this the first time in the course and about 20 times afterwards, but I cannot get it to work in my house.

 

I am following the same procedure, using the same chocolate, and working on a granite slap I bought, but after 8 attempts, nothing. I am using Cocoa Berry dark. I heat the chocolate to 40-50 C/104-122F in the microwave and let it sit for min of 10 minutes. Then I table it until it is at least 27C/81F, return the seed to the bowl and maintain at 32-3C/ 90F to work with. However, when I do a parchment test, it never sets. It looks good on the surface but does not dry for many minutes.

 

All I can think of is environment. I live in Canada. It is -23C/-10F outside. Inside, the house is 21-22C/70-72F and humidity 25%. I am feeling very frustrated and disappointed. I invested a lot in learning the basic skills of chocolate making. I did not have any particular problems in the course but I cannot even get started on my own. Any suggestion would be appreciated.

So a couple of questions for you - (sounding like a broken record here I know) - are you sure of the thermometer temperature.  Are you pouring part of the chocolate out on the slab and reserving some in the bowl to reheat the mass?  Are you sure that when you return the part you have tabled back in to the bowl that you aren't exceeding the working temperature?

 

Where in Canada are you located?  Got to be a bit north of me if you are -23 outside.



#300 Kerry Beal

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Posted 19 December 2013 - 08:13 PM

I've posted many times on failures in tempering, but this time I have a bizarre success to report.  I had a little leftover mint ganache and decided to make a few pieces; my main desire was to try some new decorating techniques.  I swirled cocoa butter into the cavities, then tempered (or perhaps not) some milk chocolate.  The test for tempering was inconclusive, but by the time I had placed the mold in the refrigerator for a while, I knew that the chocolate was not tempered (after half an hour, the chocolate in the mold was still soft).  The leftover chocolate on parchment was a mess, did not harden for a long time.  But I persevered and filled the cavities with the mint ganache.  For closing, I made sure the chocolate was tempered.  I knew the effort would be a failure, but out of curiosity I wanted to see what would happen.  After 30 minutes in the refrig, I turned the mold upside down--and out popped perfect chocolates, shiny, nothing left in the mold.

 

In some ways this is more annoying than a successful effort as it makes absolutely no sense.

Chocolate as the great equalizer!







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